Planners From Around NJ Will Gather Tomorrow for Montclair Walking Tour (Updated)


UPDATE: This article originally said the tour was on Saturday. It’s on Friday, October 5.
Last month, Montclair was named a “Great Place in New Jersey” by the NJ chapter of the American Planning Association. Now, Luther Flurry, Executive Director of the Montclair Center Corporation, has announced that APA-NJ will sponsor “Planning for Yesterday and Tomorrow: History, Streetscapes and Promise in Montclair Center,” a local walking tour set for this Saturday tomorrow, aimed primarily at planners from other communities who want to learn from what Montclair has accomplished.

According to the APA-NJ, “Montclair Center is a vital and evolving downtown, where urban planners have implemented projects for over a century.” During the course of the walking tour, participants will discuss the historic architecture of Montclair Center and projects past, present and future.

The APA-NJ says highlights will include: Church Street plaza design and implementation, redesign of South Park Street, recent and coming medium-rise mixed use development, Transit Village and urban renewal projects initiated the seventies. Narrating the walk will be Peter Steck, formerly of the Montclair Planning Department (1973-1978 & 1981-1990), Janice Talley, Montclair Director of Planning and former Montclair Planning Board member (2001-2010), Dave Lustberg, Principal of Arterial Design (co-designer of the South Park Street Project) and Barton Ross, Historic Preservation Consultant to Montclair.

The tour commences at 2:00 p.m. at the intersection of Church Street with S. Fullerton and Bloomfield Avenue. More information is available from Tiffany Robinson, via [email protected]


  1. Well I certainly hope they point to the poorly-designed parking debacle that is now South Park Street, and say, “Don’t Do This!” (Someone recently posted on the Watercooler about traffic backing up onto the Avenue but remember, folks, you heard it here first!)

    Besides, I would much rather go on a walking tour with Frank GG!!

  2. “What can Montclair teach planners from other communities?”

    That our drivers do not stop for pedestrians in crosswalks, so look both ways. Twice!

  3. Conan, I’ve been hunting on line for potential retirement spots. I can’t afford SB, but Carpenteria and Paslo Robles are looking pretty good. If you’re still there in 6- 8 years, I’ll take you out for a drink.

  4. jg,

    My Father-in-law, who was from the L.A. area, retired to Paso Robles many years ago – he loved it when he was in good health, but sold his house and moved to assisted living back in L.A. when his health began to fail.

    My Aunt, who is in her early 60s and good health, has retired to SB, she loves it also.

  5. They could learn that Montclair is a good example of what NOT to do. It’s an urban planning and parking nightmare.

  6. and a Transit Village? What transit village? I don’t think the ramshackle domino’s, caggiano’s and the 24/7 hair braiding salon qualify as a transit village.

  7. I dunno… Paso Robles looks a little too desert-y for me… how about SLO? or Los Osos? maybe we could all have a “back East” reunion there in a few years!

  8. Kay, I like SLO too. I like the idea of Pacific views, which is why I like Carpenteria, where a mobile home is about $300k right now and the prices start around that for condos and go all the way up to $20mm. In Paso Robles, the drive to the Pacific is about 20 minutes and it’s still a walkable community with good food ( I know a few people who live there) and affordable ($350 – $500 for a decent house) housing. SLO is a little pricier but not as bad as SB, Montecito and Carpenteria. I’ll see y’all there in a few years!. And if this doesn’t work, it’s Baja.

  9. Paso is desert-y, but not too desert-y (IMNSHO).

    The bigger concern in that Cali is beyond bankrupt, and it was already pretty close to a police-state in places like L.A. when times were good – that’s a pretty volatile cocktail.

    It’s all moot to me in any case, at this rate I’ll never be able to retire…

  10. Kay, Gurl — I am just learning my way around here, and I am amazed by the number of “mini-climates” in this part of SoCal. We have spent some time in Carpenteria — the Santa Barbara Polo and Racquet club is there (right on the ocean, of course) and the people-watching at Sunday matches is exceptional. 🙂 Carp, Santa Barbara, Montecito (fuggedaboudit), and Goleta (where we live) are always cool because of the onshore breezes. Get inland (like Paso Robles — 30 miles from the ocean) or even just 20 miles up highway 101 from SB (Buellton, Solvang) and you are seeing 100 degrees during the day and down in the 50’s at night. Santa Barbara is truly a beautiful place — and with two decent incomes it is affordable. But when I retire, which is looming, we are going to have to look at downsizing a little or start raiding the retirement funds with a heavier hand.

    If you like being on the water and don’t mind the chill, towns like Pismo Beach, Morro Bay, Cayucos, and Cambria are very nice — all on the Pacific Coast Highway. Above Cambria, there is absolutely nothing but Big Sur’s beauty until you get to Monterey. Carmel is a nice, little, affordable retirement town. For 1%-ers. Tell Clint the Chair sent you.

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